Barley, pearl barley – once food of the poor, today grain of increasing popularity – has been cultivated for a long time, since 7000 BC in Ethiopia and SE Asia.
In comparison with wheat it is more resilient to harsher climates, but it needs fertile soil, because its roots are rather weak in getting nutrients and water.
Its chemical composition is comparable with other grains. In comparison with wheat it contains a bit less proteins and a bit more fats.
Pearl barley is also know as barley groat.